The Manitoba Junior Hockey League has begun its first scheduled ‘break week’ of the 2020-21 season. With the entire season schedule having been restructured prior to its release due to the spread of COVID-19, the league implemented various schedule pauses throughout the year to allow players to recover following potential COVID exposure, while also providing some leeway for rescheduled games that may have earlier been cancelled.
After originally having to drastically change its course on scheduled regular season games with the Winnipeg Metropolitan Region moving into ‘Code Red’ on Monday, November 2, the MJHL announced that its three teams within that area (Selkirk Steelers, Winnipeg Blues, Winnipeg Freeze) would cease operations until moving out of the red stage.
This past week, the Southern Health-Santé Sud Region also joined the Winnipeg Metropolitan Region in ‘Code Red’, meaning that another three league teams would be unable to play, practice or participate in any hockey activity. Joining the Steelers, Blues and Freeze are the Winkler Flyers, the Steinbach Pistons and the Portage Terriers, thus bringing the number of inactive teams to a total of six.
Currently left in play are the five teams within the Prairie Mountain Health Region: Neepawa Natives, Virden Oil Capitals, Waywayseecappo Wolverines, Dauphin Kings, and Swan Valley Stampeders, as well as the one team belonging to Manitoba’s Northern Health Region: OCN Blizzard. Now entering the first ‘break week’ of the season, no games will be played this coming weekend (November 13-15) teams eligible to resume the set schedule will do so. All other teams within restricted areas will be on call.
A statement from the league included the following:
“The MJHL Board of Governors will be meeting this week to further discuss the situation – Please stay tuned for upcoming schedule announcements in the coming days.
As always, we appreciate the continued support of the entire MJHL community as we continue to navigate through these unprecedented and difficult challenges together.
The MJHL would also like to acknowledge the outstanding support and commitment provided by league corporate partners in the midst of these difficult times.
Thank you for your patience and understanding.”